'Kat Wolfe Investigates' is an enjoyable read with a complex plot and a setting to adore. Classic in tone, it is a mystery with a modern twist.
Leaving London, Kat Wolfe and her veterinarian mum move to the Jurassic Coast to start a new life. While Dr Wolfe sets up a new practice, Kat eagerly starts her own pet-sitting agency. But when she agrees to look after a parrot in a high-tech mansion, things begin to go awry. Its the start of her Kat's first mystery to solve. So off she goes to investigate...
This is a fun and entertaining read that reminds me of classic mystery books in the vein of 'The Famous Five', although here we only have Kat and her friend Harper (and an assortment of pets). The greatest strength of 'Kat Wolfe Investigates' is the richness of its setting and the brilliant depiction of a diverse range of characters - animals included. This is 'Broadchurch' for kids. I loved both Kat and Harper as an unusual detective team. But I also love all the characters who pop up along the way - I only hope we get to cross their paths again in the sequel.
For me, the plot was perhaps a tad complicated, although some bright kids (rather than a tired father) will lap this up and enjoy the ride. I was perhaps expecting something more tranquil but Lauren St John isn't writing about a simple case of missing pumpkins... it's much more, with a lot more depth and detail. It sort of reminds me of that Doctor Who episode (Matt Smith's first adventure) where big events happen in a small, quaint place, and technology comes to the rescue. I guess I just didn't expect it.
In saying that, Lauren St John crafts a killer mystery. I became so invested in Bluebell Bay that I will have return there again soon and read the sequel, 'Kat Wolfe Takes the Case'.